|Isaac Yefremovich Boleslavsky (1919 – 1977) was a Ukrainian-Jewish chess grandmaster. He was born in Zolotonosha, Ukraine on June 9. In 1936, he won third prize in the USSR Junior Championship, held in Leningrad.|
In 1938, he won the Ukraine championship, aged only 19. In 1939 he again won the Ukraine championship, qualified to play in the USSR championship at the age of 20 and gained his national chess master title.
In 1940, he played in the 12th USSR championship in Moscow. He won 8 of his last 10 games and tied for 5th-6th. At the end of 1940 he won the Ukraine championship for the third time in a row. In 1941, he took part in the match-tournament for the title of Absolute Champion of the USSR and won fourth prize.
In 1945 he took second place in the 14th USSR championship, behind Mikhail Botvinnik. He won 9, drew 6, lost 2. He was awarded the Grandmaster title in the USSR. He played on third board of the USSR-USA radio match. He drew his first game with Reuben Fine and defeated him in the second game, winning a prize for the best game of the match.
In 1946 his daughter Tatiana was born. She later married David Bronstein, 18 years her senior. In 1946 he made his international debut in Groningen and tied for 6th-7th.
He was the first player ever to go through a Candidates" tournament undefeated. In April 1950 he tied for first place with Bronstein in the Candidates" tournament in Budapest, but lost the play-off to Bronstein in Moscow. In 1950 he was given the International Grandmaster title.
In 1951 he was Bronstein"s assistant during his match with Botvinnik for the world championship. In 1952 he scored 7 out of 8 at the Helsinki Olympiad. In 1953 he participated in the Candidates" tournament in Zurich. He ended up in 10-11th place.
In 1961 he played in his last USSR championship. He took first place at an international tournament in Debrecen. He was world champion Tigran Petrosian"s assistant from 1963 to 1969.
In 1968 he captained the USSR students" team championship which won the world championship. His last tournament appearance was in Minsk in 1971. He was 52.
Boleslavsky had a plus record against Mikhail Tal. He even beat Tal with black pieces in Riga in 1958 (moves given in Algebraic chess notation):
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f3 O-O 6.Be3 e5 7.d5 c5 8.g4 Ne8 9.h4 f5 10.gxf5 gxf5 11.exf5 Bxf5 12.Bd3 e4 13.fxe4 Qe7 14.exf5 Qxe3+ 15.Qe2 Qg3+ 16.Kd2 Nc7 17.Qh2 Qxh2+ 18.Rxh2 Nd7 19.Ne4 Kh8 20.Rg2 b5 21.Nf3 bxc4 22.Bxc4 Rab8 23.Rb1 Rxf5 24.Nfg5 Ne5 25.Bb3 c4 26.Bc2 Nxd5 27.Nxd6 Rf6 28.Nf5 Rd8 29.Ke1 Nf4 30.Rg3 Ned3+ 31.Bxd3 Nxd3+ 32.Rxd3 Rxd3 33.Nxg7 Kxg7 34.Ke2 h6 35.Ne4 Re6 36.Rg1+ Rg6
37.Rc1 Rg2+ 38.Nf2 Rd4 39.Kf3 Rg6 40.Ne4 Re6 41.Rg1+ Kf8 42.Rg4 Ra6 43.h5 Ra5 44.Rf4+ Ke7 45.Rg4 Rxh5 46.Kf4 Kf7 47.Ke3 Rd3+ 48.Kf4 Rh2 49.Ke5 Re2 50.Rf4+ Ke7 51.Kf5 Rd4 0-1
He died in Minsk on February 15, 1977 at the age of 57.